Though Essex batsman and England captain Alastair Cook might not be heading back any time soon, given the current performance of the national side against India’s bowling attack, there’s no doubt that the sub continent’s dream destinations are every bit as beguiling and enthralling as its spinners are proving to be!

Buoyed perhaps by the success of the ‘Best Exotic…’ movies that showed the older generation very much at home in the bustling streets of Jaipur, and certainly helped by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to introduce e-visas for visitors in late 2014, bookings to the fabled ‘Golden Triangle’ cities of Delhi, Agra and ‘Pink City’, as Jaipur is known, as well as destinations the length and breath of India’s vast, fascinating land, have been booming over recent months.

Driven on by the renewed interest and easier access, tourists have been flocking to discover and explore Delhi’s Rajput-era grandeur, the remnants of the six previous cities that occupied its present location and its modern go-ahead southern districts, to gaze in awe at Agra’s fabled Taj Mahal, and to cross Rajasthan’s dusty plain to Jaipur, with its monumental Amber Fort and mesmerising ‘Palace of the Winds’.

Specialist tour operator Newmarket Holidays, ABTA V7812 ATOL 2325, offer half a dozen fully escorted tours to India, and who were voted ‘Best Tour Operator to S E Asia’ at last year’s prestigious British Travel Awards, also report bookings to the sub-continent at an all-time high.

Most popular of all the tours is the ‘Tigers and Taj’ itinerary, which combines stays in the three ‘Golden Triangle’ cities with time in the famed Ranthambore National Park, former hunting ground of Maharajahs and Indian princes, but now the preserve of hunters with camera lenses rather than shotguns and riding in open-air jeeps and purpose-built ‘canter’ safari trucks rather than atop elephant back.

The tour, which can be taken on its own, or combined with a journey to Amritsar’s famous Golden Temple, to Himalayan Nepal or to Mumbai and the sacred Ganges’ city of Varanasi, has captured the imagination of thousands of customers who, according to Newmarket’s Long Haul Director Richard Harrington, are “desperate to see the wonders of India now, before they’re swept up in the rush towards modernity”. As Mr Harrington points out, there really is a “see it now” feeling about the whole country, and passenger numbers are a reflection of this. With 2017 tours filling up fast and early dates for 2018 on sale already, the future for Indian tourism, as it is for its cricket team, is looking very bright indeed.

Newmarket Holidays’ fully escorted ten-day ‘Tigers & the Taj’ tour from London Heathrow is available on selected dates from January 2017 until November 2018 with prices starting at £1,099 per person.

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More info at or call 0330 160 7776 to book/request a brochure.


More info at or call 0330 160 7778 to book/request a brochure.